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AKN research gets approval

Dr Willem Visser, Head of Dermatology, Stellenbosch University has been awarded the L’Oréal African Hair & Skin research grant for his research on Acne keloidalis nuchae (AKN). The award is open to all dermatologists and African PhD students specialising in the science of skin and hair. AKN is a skin and hair condition that predominantly affects males with afro-textured hair and patients of African or mixed descent.
It affects the nape of the neck and beyond, and produces pustules which results in permanent hair loss and large areas of scarring. Dr. Visser’s study aims to investigate the earliest manifestations of its spread. The study aims to empower dermatologists to identify early markers of the disease. For patients who are already diagnosed and in the care of a dermatologist, also it will aim to provide clinical tools to assess further spread of the disease. The grant supports a one-year research project in Sub-Saharan Africa and the winner receives an amount of 10 000 Euros.
“Our recently inaugurated Research & Innovation Center in Johannesburg will collaborate with the African scientific ecosystem, universities, dermatologists, natural biodiversity centres as well as hairdressers,” explains Dr Michele Verschoore, Medical Director, L’Oreal Research & Innovation.

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